What happened to Malcolm In The Middle star Frankie Muniz?

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Child star Frankie Muniz is probably best remembered as the star of the long-running sitcom Malcolm In The Middle.

He certainly wasn't just known for that though.

Frankie also starred in films including Agent Cody Banks, My Dog Skip and Big Fat Liar as well as making multiple guest appearances in shows such as Lizzie McGuire and Sabrina, the Teenage Witch.

Actor Frankie Muniz and Cody Linley with Skip in a scene from My Dog Skip. The kids have skip in a basket attached to a pulley system and are pulling war faces.
Actor Frankie Muniz in one of his earliest professional jobs in the movie My Dog Skip. Photo: Getty Images

He started acting at eight years old playing Tiny Tim in a local production of A Christmas Carol in his home state of North Carolina.

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He became a professional actor at 12 and then as a young-looking 14-year-old, landed the lead role as Malcolm in Malcolm In The Middle.

Bryan Cranston, Jane Kaczmarek, Christopher Kennedy Masterson, Erik Per Sullivan, Justin Berfield and Frankie Muniz stand smiling in late 90s short sleeved shirt fashion
Frankie with his Malcolm In The Middle family - Bryan Cranston (as dad Hal), Jane Kaczmarek (as mum Lois), Christopher Kennedy Masterson (as his oldest brother Francis), Erik Per Sullivan (as little brother Dewey) and Justin Berfield (as older brother Reece). Photo: Getty Images

He seemed to navigate his fame as a child actor well telling Girl magazine when he was 17: "People are always asking me: How are you going to make that transition to becoming an adult actor? Well, in eight months when I turn 18 I'm going to be a legal adult and if I'm acting then, doesn't that make me an adult actor?"

"I think everything will work out and be all right," he added.

He was right too - whether on the big or the small screen, he has barely been out of work since.

Actor Frankie Muniz laughing on set during an interview with talk show host Jay Leno
Frankie during a TV interview with chat show host Jay Leno in the first year of Malcolm In The Middle. Photo: Getty Images

After he finished filming Malcolm In The Middle in 2006, Frankie decided to turn to the adrenaline-filled world of race car driving, an interesting choice given he is accident prone.

"Since 2006, I’ve broken 38 bones," Frankie told People magazine, revealing he has endured nine concussions since the age of seven.

"As a kid I did everything. I played ice hockey, soccer, basketball, soccer. But a year ago I went roller skating, and I was literally the dad holding onto the rail. I realized I have to take care of myself," he said.

Then in 2009, he got into an accident on the race track.

"My car flipped a bunch and I crashed into a wall. In the end, I broke my back, ankle, four ribs and my hand. My thumb was dangling by the skin."

Actor Frankie Muniz stands smiling on race day in white Toyota team gear, crowds and cars in background
Frankie took up car racing in 2006 and has developed it as another career. Photo: Getty Images

His medical dramas didn't stop there though.

In 2012, he had his first transient ischemic attack (TIA) or mini stroke, as they were diagnosed at the time.

"First, I lose my peripheral vision," Frankie explained at the time.

"And I can see people but I can’t recognize them. I can see words but I can’t tell what they say. Then I start going numb. It’s a gross feeling. But I know now when it’s going to come. I usually go lay down and wait [for it to be over]."

He has since had over a dozen such episodes.

"I've gone to so many neurologists who have done every single test," he says. "I have no answers as to why it happens. I got so tired of trying to find an answer that I don’t think I’ll search for an answer anymore. I’ve accepted it."

As if acting and race car driving weren't enough, in 2012 he tried his hand at music, becoming the drummer in the band Kingsfoil.

He had followed the band for a while and when he saw that they were looking for a new drummer, he decided to audition.

"I almost didn’t go," he told The Hollywood Reporter, "I was a little intimidated because I was such a fan of their music. I thought I wasn’t good enough."

Frankie Muniz playing drums at a Kingsfoil show
Frankie Muniz was a fan of the band Kingsfoil before becoming their drummer for a couple of years. Photo: Getty Images

However, he was only in the band for two years before he couldn't commit to all their dates.

"Due to scheduling conflicts in the coming months, the guys in the band decided to replace me as the drummer a few weeks ago," he wrote on Facebook.

"Although I'm sad about not being a part of the band, I understand their decision and support them moving forward!"

In 2017, he went on to join Dancing With The Stars.

It was then that he admitted that he had trouble remembering some of his on-screen career or attending the Emmys.

"I’ve gotten to really do anything I’ve wanted to do," Muniz said in an interview for Dancing with the Stars, "But the truth is, I don’t really remember much of that."

"I'm not looking for sympathy or anyone to care about it," he told EW, "I've been so lucky and fortunate in my life to be able to do all the things I've gotten to do. I've literally had three dream jobs and I'm still continuing."

His on-screen dad, Malcolm In The Middle and Breaking Bad actor Bryan Cranston, also has his back.

"I told him not to worry about what you remember and what you don’t remember," he revealed to People.

"They’re still your experiences. That will be my job. I will tell him, 'Remember this? Remember that from Malcolm? What a life for you!'"

Frankie Muniz and Whitney Carson in sparkling silver outfits performing on Dancing With The Stars with smoke and stage lights in the background
In 2017, Frankie showed he can dance when he took part in Dancing With The Stars, he and his professional partner Whitney Carson came third. Photo: Getty Images

And true to his word, Bryan is still looking out for Frankie.

"Bryan reaches out to me every two weeks and he has for 15 years," Frankie said during Steve-O's Wild Ride! podcast last year.

"Like literally reaches out, 'Just checking on you, hope you're well, what are you up to?' He's literally a Hollywood god and he calls me. He's the best," Frankie added.

Frankie also said in the podcast that his memory issues were not as bad as had been made out in the media, but admitted his memory is not great.

He also revealed that he had been misdiagnosed with TIA, the mini-strokes, and actually had been experiencing aura migraines all that time.

Frankie sitting in his race car wearing white team Toyota gear, on lookers in background
Frankie now wants to focus on becoming a NASCAR driver. Photo: Getty Images

Frankie, now 36, has decided to put acting on the back burner and focus on his car racing career again in the hope of breaking into NASCAR.

"I like to say now that I am acting on the side," Frankie said earlier this year.

"I want racing to be my focus. It's one of those things you have to do 100%. You can't just do it halfway. If I want to make it to any level of NASCAR — ARCA, Trucks, whatever it is — I'm racing against people who have been doing it since they were six years old, and I've gotta do it quickly," he added.

He hasn't given up acting altogether though, appearing in guest roles on The Rookie and New Amsterdam recently.

Frankie in a guest appearance on New Amsterdam, his character sits by the bed of a woman on oxygen, looking towards treating doctor for guidance
He still found time to film an episode of New Amsterdam this year! Photo: Getty Images

His personal life is also pretty busy, marrying his partner, model Paige Price in 2019, starting a business together, and then selling it after their 16-month-old son, Mauz Mosley Muniz, came along.

Frankie is now a dad to baby son Mauz and married to model Paige Price. Photo: Instagram/@frankiemuniz4
Frankie is now a dad to baby son Mauz and married to model Paige Price. Photo: Instagram/@frankiemuniz4

Frankie is certainly not one to sit still, he also plays golf tournaments and rides motorbikes, so we won't be surprised if he makes it onto the NASCAR circuit sometime soon!

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